Louisiana Lecture

Symposium: Archives & Art History

  • Date
    Thursday 29. September
  • Time
    Kl. 14:00 - 17:30
  • Place
    The Concert Hall
  • Price
    DKK 20 (+ fee DKK 10)

Inspired by The Nicolas and Elena Calas Archive, The Danish Institute in Athens and Louisiana invite to a symposium about archives and archival material.


Please note, that by booking a seat to the symposium, admission to the museum is included as well as coffee.

The Calas Archive, that came to Louisiana in 1990 as a gift from Greek-American poet and art critic Nicolas Calas and his wife Elena Calas, is today located at Nordic Library in Athens with public access. Letters, manuscripts, photos and personal papers here intermingle with drawings, sketches and poems from international artists such as Jacqueline Lamba, Meret Oppenheim, Kay Sage, Joyce Mansour and Takis.

Nicolas and Elena Calas / The Nicolas and Elena Calas Archive.

Presentations by...

Grazina Subelyte, ph.d. in art history from Courtauld Institute of Art in London and associate curator at Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, including curation of the exhibitions Rita Kernn-Larsen. Surrealist Paintings (2017) and Surrealism and Magic (2022).

Camille Morando, ph.d. in art history from Université Paris-Sorbonne in Paris. Morando is associate professor in art history at École du Louvre in Paris and in charge of the documentation of the modern collections at Centre Pompidou in Paris. She is editor of the plublication Victor Brauner écrits et correspondences 1938-1948 (2006).

Robert Kelly, American author of over 80 books of poetry, essays, and fiction. A long poem, The Cup, and a collection of fairy tales, Shadow Talk, are his latest books. Kelly has received awards from National Institute and Academy of Arts and Letters and National Endowment for the Arts. He is Doctor of Letters at State University of New York and has been teaching at Bard College since 1961.

Liliane Lijn, American artist. Since the 1960s Lijn has focused on science, the body and words in her art. Her work is in the collections of Tate Gallery in London and Art Institute of Chicago in USA. Lijn exhibits at the Venice Biennale 2022.

Mogens Pelt, ph.d. and dr.phil. in history from University of Copenhagen with modern Greece and the eastern areas of the Mediterranean as field study. Since 2020 Pelt has been director at The Danish Institute at Athens, which in 1999 were given the Nicolas and Elena Calas Archive as a permanent loan from Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark.

Johan Zimsen Kristiansen, MA in art history from University of Copenhagen. Kristiansen has been part of The New Carlsberg Foundation’s Sources on Danish Art History and recently curator on the exhibition Niels Nedergaard. Photographs from Cairo at David’s Museum in Copenhagen (2022).


14.00: Introduction by Mogens Pelt and Johan Zimsen Kristiansen.

14.05-14.40: Mogens Pelt director at The Danish Institute in Athens: An introduction to Nicolas Calas and modern Greece.

14.45-15.15: Johan Zimsen Kristiansen, freelance art historian: What is an archive? The Nicolas and Elena Calas Archive at Nordic Library in Athens.

15.25-15.30: Robert Kelly, American author: A video recorded reading of the poem For The Unconquered Sun from The Nicolas and Elena Calas Archive.

15.30-15.50: Coffee break in the Boathouse.

16.00-16.40: Grazina Subelyte, associate curator at Peggy Guggenheim Collection: Rethinking the archive. On Peggy Guggenheim’s archives.

16.40-16.50: Liliane Lijn, American born artist: A sound recorded reading of one of her letters from The Nicolas and Elena Calas Archive.

16.50-17.20: Camille Morando, professor at Ecole de Louvre and responsible for the documentation of the collections at Centre Pompidou: Views on the archives and the art history.

17.20-17.30: Mogens Pelt and Johan Zimsen Kristiansen: Follow up.

Please note, that the doors to the Concert Hall open 20 minutes before the programme starts.

The symposium is supported by Arrangementet er støttet af Beckett Foundation and New Carlsberg Foundation. Organized by Louisiana, The Danish Institute in Athens and art historian Johan Zimsen Kristiansen.